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Demulsification of Crude Oil with Water and Salt Removal Demulsifiers in Oilfields

Oil produced from oil wells at oil fields is usually in the form of water-oil or oil-water emulsions containing considerable proportion of water and salts dissolved in it. This oil when transported through pipelines or further processed in equipment can cause corrosion threats for the production system. The saline water in the oil contains oxygen which is the significant component causing corrosion. This oxygen when reacts with metal causes oxidation reaction causing corrosion of metals. Therefore separation of water and salts from oil is very important before the oil is acceptable for further transportation or treatment at a refinery or oilfield. This process of oil and water salts separation in oilfields is called demulsification.

Demulsification is process in which constituents of emulsion are separated which otherwise are not possible to separate. Emulsions of water and oil in oilfields are formed due to turbulence in the production tubing and pipeline and especially when passing through chokes such as at the wellhead. These water-in-oil or oil-in-water type of emulsions produced are therefore treated with demulsifiers for separation of water from oil. Demulsifiers are the specialty chemicals which demulsify crude oil in oilfields. They break the water-oil emulsions and separate bulk of the water from oil produced. This partially refined oil is then transported to the refineries. Little water is still present in oil even after such initial demulsification which makes it unacceptable for further refining process. The oil should be as free from water as possible for refining because the salts present in the residual water in the oil can upset catalytic refining processes. They can cause corrosion and fouling of heat exchangers in the refinery. Further demulsification of oil and water emulsion is done with fresh water dilution of emulsion and with specialized demulsifiers for salt removal from oil. In this process fresh water is added to the oil and the salt concentration is diluted. The residual water and the salts from water are then separated out by the use of salt removal demulsifiers. These demulsifiers used in refineries act on gravity separation of the constituents for salt separation from oil. Once the salt is removed oil is free of corrosion elements and is just apt for the further refining stages. This kind of salt removal in refineries is called desalting and is the most common tasks employed at initial stages in oil refineries.

Manufacturer of Demulsifiers

Rimpro India is a leading oilfield chemicals and demulsifier manufacturer in India producing a wide range of demulsifiers for water oil separation in oilfield processes. High quality oil and water soluble demulsifiers with medium concentration of surfactants for oilfield processes are offered at cost effective prices by the manufacturer. For further details visit http://www.rimpro-india.com

This article has been written by Govindbhai Mathurdas Patel